Elizabeth Warren released yet another in-depth plan, and it includes some great news for transgender service members.
Just in time for Veteran’s Day on November 11, a new plan unveiled on Monday includes a full overturn of Trump-led attempts to ban trans people from serving openly in the military, which were first laid out in a series of July 2017 tweets. “Our national security community is weaker when LGBTQ+ Americans are excluded,” Warren writes.
Warren has long said that one of her first acts as president would be to overturn Trump’s trans military ban.
“I'll reverse it on the first day of my presidency,” reads her new plan, adding that “the only thing that should matter when it comes to allowing military personnel to serve is whether or not they can handle the job.”
Although the president has claimed that allowing transgender people to serve openly in the military would result in “tremendous medical costs and disruption,” a 2016 study commissioned by the Pentagon showed that trans inclusion in the armed forces would have next to no impact on either the military's annual budget or troop readiness.
Nonetheless, the Trump administration has continued to defend the ban, which was allowed to go into effect earlier this year as a series of legal challenges seeking to overturn it make their way through the court system.
The extensive document — which includes about two dozen detailed sections in total — also spells out robust protections for LGBTQ+ veterans, covering “all medically necessary care related to the health of transgender people,” including transition-related surgery. This care would be included under her Medicare for All plan, which has come under some scrutiny in recent days over fears it would prove too costly.
Warren also pledged to including LGBTQ+ people in the Veteran Administration’s Center for Minority Veterans, which would ensure that queer and trans veterans recieve targeted outreach and services.
Warren’s plan also details protections for women in the military and immigrants serving in the armed forces, making it clear that the government “will protect veterans and family members of serving military personnel from deportation.” “[W]e will review the cases of those who have been deported for possible return to the United States,” the agenda claims.
According to Warren, service members who are immigrants are more likely to be denied citizenship than immigrants who have not served. What’s more, she claims that “applications for naturalization as a result of military service dropped 72 percent between 2017 and 2018.”
“This is a disgrace,” she concludes. “It also undermines military readiness."
Warren currently serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee and has called for an end to overseas conflicts.
“It’s not fair to our men and women in uniform to ask them to solve problems that don’t have a military solution,” she writes in the plan. “We can honor our veterans by ending these endless wars, reining in our bloated defense budget and reducing the influence of defense contractors at the Pentagon and bringing our troops home responsibly — and then providing our veterans with the benefits they’ve earned.”
Prior to the release of her military plan, Warren rolled out a robust agenda for LGBTQ+ equality last month that includes outlawing conversion therapy, allowing gay and bisexual men to donate blood, and giving trans people access to hormones under Medicare for All.